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Patrick Markey, PhD - Villanova University. Villanova, PA, US

Patrick Markey, PhD Patrick Markey, PhD

Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences | College of Liberal Arts and Sciences | Villanova University


Patrick Markey, PhD, is an expert on how violent video games affect behavior and relationship issues.



Patrick Markey, PhD Publication




Expert: Video games don't trigger violence Violent video game play and violence. Is there a connection? (March 2018) Do violent video games cause acts of violence? (March 2018) Do video games make you violent? (July 2018)



Areas of Expertise (8)

Video Games Violent Video Games Online Interactions Body Image Romantic Relationships Sexual Behaviors The Interpersonal Circumplex Psychology


Often cited in popular media for insights into his two areas of research: how violent video games affect behavior; and relationship issues, Dr. Markey is a great source for stories that delve into interpersonal behaviors. He directs Villanova's Interpersonal Research Laboratory which seeks to understand how behavioral tendencies develop and are expressed within social relationships. Research in the lab examines how interpersonal behaviors affect unhealthy dieting, civic behavior, personality judgment, and aggression after playing violent video games.

Education (3)

University of California, Riverside: PhD

University of California, Riverside: MA

California State University, Fullerton: BA

Affiliations (7)

  • Interpersonal Research Laboratory
  • Society of Interpersonal Theory and Research
  • News Media, Public Education and Public Policy Committee
  • Journal of Research in Personality (Editorial Board Member)
  • Assessment (Editorial Board Member)
  • Journal of Personality (Editorial Board Member)
  • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (Grant Reviewer)

Select Media Appearances (6)

World Health Organization says video game addiction is a disease. Why American psychiatrists don’t

The Washington Post  


“Video game addiction might be a real thing,” psychologists Patrick M. Markey of Villanova University and Christopher J. Ferguson of Stetson University wrote in a commentary accompanying that study. “But it is not the epidemic that some have made it out to be.”

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The ‘Active Shooter’ video game horrified Parkland parents. It was pulled before release.

The Washington Post  


That is much lower than the 70 percent of male high school students who show interest in those types of games, said Patrick Markey, a Villanova University psychology professor and co-author of “Moral Combat: Why the War on Violent Video Games Is Wrong.” “Kids who are psychologically healthy tend to do things their peers do,” Markey told The Washington Post on Tuesday. “It’s a sign of health and normal for kids to play violent video games whether parents like it or not.”

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Trump Says Video Games Cause Violence, But Research Shows They Actually Do The Opposite



“What we find is pretty much no matter which way you cut it, there always ends up being this inverse relationship where when people are playing these violent video games or at least consuming them, we actually see dips in homicides and aggravated assaults,” said Villanova University professor Patrick Markey. In their book Moral Combat: Why the War on Video Games Is Wrong, Markey and coauthor Christopher Ferguson lay out how researchers have approached this question from different angles.

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Trump reopens a seemingly settled video-game debate

The Associated Press  online


In the wake of the Florida school shooting, President Donald Trump is reviving an old debate over whether violent video games can trigger violent behavior. There's just one problem: Roughly two decades of research has repeatedly failed to uncover any such link. ... Patrick Markey, a psychology professor at Villanova University who focuses on video games, found in his research that men who commit severe acts of violence actually play violent video games less than the average male.

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Salon Talks - Interview with Patrick Markey



The psychology of video games. Patrick Markey, author of “Moral Combat” joins Salon to discuss reframing the national conversation around violent video games.

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Op-ed: Video Games Aren’t Addictive

The New York Times  


Is video game addiction a real thing? It’s certainly common to hear parents complain that their children are “addicted” to video games. Some researchers even claim that these games are comparable to illegal drugs in terms of their influence on the brain — that they are “digital heroin” (the neuroscientist Peter C. Whybrow) or “digital pharmakeia” (the neuroscientist Andrew Doan). The American Psychiatric Association has identified internet gaming disorder as a possible psychiatric illness, and the World Health Organization has proposed including “gaming disorder” in its catalog of mental diseases, along with drug and alcohol addiction.

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Select Academic Articles (5)

Internet Gaming Addiction: Disorder or Moral Panic? The American Journal of Psychiatry

Markey, P. M., & Ferguson, C. J.


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Evaluating circumplex structure in the Interpersonal Scales for the NEO-PI-3 Assessment

Louie, J. F., Kurtz, J. E., & Markey, P. M.


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Does Sexy Media Promote Teen Sex? A Meta-Analytic and Methodological Review Psychiatric Quarterly.

Ferguson, C.J., Nielsen, R.K.L., & Markey, P.M.


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Dissimilarity in physical attractiveness within romantic dyads and mate retention behaviors Journal of Social and Personal Relationships

Joshua R. Oltmanns, Patrick M. Markey, and Juliana E. French


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The pivotal role of psychology in a comprehensive theory of obesity Health Psychology Open

Charlotte N. Markey, Kristin J August, Lindzee C. Bailey, Patrick M Markey, and Christopher S. Nave


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